A bike computer is a device designed to measure speed, mileage and additional parameters when cycling. There are two types of mechanisms – wired and wireless bike computers. They differ in cost and basic set of functions, but they assume the same principle of installation and configuration.

The principle of operation of the device

Before proceeding to the instructions for setting up the bike computer, you need to know the general principle of the device.

In general, the measurement process is quite simple:

  1. A special magnet is fixed in the back area;
  2. A sensor is installed on the fork of the bicycle. In inexpensive devices – Reed switch, and in premium – Hall;
  3. The rotation of the wheel affects the magnet, which sends a signal to the computer. As the wheel rotates, the device calculates the distance and speed of the trip.

bike computer

Installation instructions

Mounting platform – a panel that has two contacts and a lock for mounting the device. The first step is to install the panel on one of the standard sections of the bike:

  • Bracket (removal) of the steering wheel. The optimal place for a computer with large dimensions and several buttons for control;
  • Rudder center – a safe place that is ideal for a compact device;
  • The edge of the grips – allows you to place the bike computer close to your hands, which makes it easier to control the mechanism.

Regardless of the location of the platform on the steering wheel, care must be taken to avoid falling the computer.

In order to securely fix the platform in the steering wheel area, you can use disposable flagella, which require a strong tightening. This is due to the fact that when removing the device, the main load falls on the platform. A rubber backing is used to ensure a strong hold. Such an element will prevent slipping on the surface of the steering wheel.

Installation kit

Sensor and Sensor Mounting

Installing the sensor and magnet is a complex process, in which errors are unacceptable. The acceptable distance between the system components and the wheel axle is 10 centimeters. This will reduce the measurement error caused by centrifugal force acting on the magnet.

The reed switch (sensor) is mounted on the suspension fork using flagella or metal clamps. Perpendicular arrangement of the Reed switch to the axis of the magnet is the most optimal solution for installing the sensor.

After mounting the sensor part on the spoke, you need to fix the magnet. We measure the exact distance from the sensor to the magnet. It should not exceed 2 mm, otherwise the error in the indicators will be large. We tighten the magnet so that the vibrations of the wheel do not displace it.

If the bike owner decides to mount the device on the rear wheel, then the main focus is on the length of the flagella. It is necessary to choose the length so that the contact between the elements is not lost due to wheel vibration.

Using the 2nd mounting option, when twisting the steering wheel, there is a risk of damaging the wire.

The advantage of attaching the sensor and magnet to the front is ease of installation and less risk of the wires breaking when the handlebar is twisted. If the computer is wireless, then by installing it on the front wheel, the owner significantly saves battery power.

The next step is to place the wire in such a way that the design looks aesthetically pleasing. It is important to correctly determine the length. This will avoid possible problems: hitting other structures, creating interference during movement, etc.

The length of the wire is determined as follows: we lead the wire to the bike computer without overloading the plug, with a margin of 10-20 centimeters. We fix the contacts and remove the rest. Installation is carried out by one of two methods:

  • By steering column. The wire is fixed on special flagella. An overlap remains at the bottom of the frame;
  • By brake line. It makes sense to lower the cable a little. It is not recommended to wrap the brake cable with wire. Such an action will not only spoil the view, but also make the dismantling of the structure difficult.

The way how to install the wireless type bike computer is easier. If the sensor and the magnet are placed in one housing, then to start work it is enough to lay a wire between them.

Deciphering indicators for customization

To make it easier for future device settings, you should pay attention to the decoding of the following indicators:

  1. Speed/SPD – speed at the time of the trip. Usually measured in miles/kilometers per hour;
  2. AVG/AVS – indicator of average speed (0-th speed is not taken into account);
  3. TM/Time – the duration of the entire journey;
  4. DST is the distance traveled by the cyclist since the last reset;
  5. ODO – mileage. To reset the indicator, a special RESET button is used;
  6. Scan – demonstration of indicators. When a function is selected, each parameter will appear in turn on the cycle computer screen.

Setting up the bike computer

The first thing to start setting up a bike computer is to determine dimensions (circles) wheels. This value directly affects the correctness of measurements and calculations of the device.

There are two ways to calculate wheel circumference:

  1. Classical. For measurement, a thread wrapped around the wheel is used. The method involves small errors, because during the movement the chamber is compressed under the influence of pressure.
  2. Full wheel load. For this, two points are drawn. One on the tire, the other on the road. The owner drives one revolution, after which the distance between the points is measured.

Wheel load

To set up some models of bike computers, you only need to know the size of the wheel, without calculating the length. Read the instructions carefully.

To simplify the setting, below is a table of the ratio of marking and circumference:

Marking 16″x1.5″ 16″x2.0″ 6″x1.95″ 20″x1-1/4″ 26″x1.0″ 24″x1.9″ 26″x1.5″ 26″x1.75
Circumference in mm 1206 1253 1257 1618 1913 1916 1953 2035
Marking 26″x2.0″ 700cx20mm 26″x2.25″ 700cx23 26″x2.3″ 27”x1-1/8 700c x 32mm 27″x1-1/4″
Circumference 2074 2074 2115 2105 2135 2155 2155 2161

In order for the computer to accurately show the results, it is recommended to use the following formula:


Lone – corrected length;

L0 – the given size of the wheel circumference;

S0 – the distance shown on the cycle computer that the user has traveled;

Sone – the distance measured by the owner himself. For example, a stadium circle or a straight track.


There is a circle equal to 300 meters. The user drives a distance with the device turned on. The bike computer gave the distance traveled equal to 305 meters. We substitute the parameters into the formula and get the corrected value.

Also read:

The main functions of the cycle computer after setting up

The basic set of the bike computer includes 7 main functions:

  • Current trip speed;
  • Average speed (the possibility is not available in budget devices);
  • Maximum speed during the walk;
  • Distance traveled;
  • Distance traveled since the computer was installed (odometer);
  • Total travel time;
  • Watch.

It is important to pay attention to the fact that the user can manually adjust the odometer parameters. This will avoid unpleasant situations when mileage is lost after replacing the battery.

In addition to standard features, advanced models have additional features:

  • The number of calories burned – the indicator is calculated based on data on average speed, distance traveled and heart rate;
  • The pulse is a useful feature for people who are not allowed to overload the heart.

Setting advanced features

In addition to the standard set of functions, many models have a number of additional features:

  • Clock – are configured in accordance with the number of buttons available on the device;
  • Calorie counter – you must enter data on your own weight.

When setting up, you need to learn the units of measure. Due to the fact that the circumference parameters in most devices are given in millimeters, weight values ​​u200bu200bare driven in pounds.

Possible problems

Sometimes bike computers fail. They are fairly easy to diagnose and fix. Two types of problems are common:

  1. The device does not turn on;
  2. Invalid speed data.

AT first If so, the problem lies with the batteries. Their charge is depleted quickly enough, which requires frequent replacement. In many budget models, after the battery is depleted, the parameters go back to the base values.

Second the problem indicates that the magnet and sensor are installed incorrectly. During the trip, vibrations occur in the wheels, which causes the magnet to move. This prevents the sensor from reading accurate data.

To solve the problem, it is enough to lift the wheel and follow the cycle computer by passing the magnet near the sensor. If the sensor reads information every other time, then the magnet must be corrected.

If the problem occurs during the trip, and in a static state everything is in order, then the problem lies in the wire. It must be studied and, if a problem is found, repair or replace.

Video installation and configuration of the bike computer

Video instruction with a detailed analysis of the process of installing and configuring a Chinese bike computer:

A bike computer is a handy gadget that will be useful to all cycling enthusiasts. The device allows you to fully control the process of the trip, showing the results that the owner has achieved. This will allow drawing conclusions and adjusting the cycling program to increase the effectiveness of classes.